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Unifor, province of Ontario open ‘action centre’ for workers affected by GM closure

January 15, 2020
By Talent Canada Staff

Photo: Getty Images

A new action centre to support auto parts workers affected by the assembly line closure at the General Motors (GM) Oshawa plant with assistance to skills retraining and employment services is set to open in early January, 2020.

“Workers across Oshawa and the Durham region face a difficult job transition period,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “The Ontario government’s support comes at a vital time when auto parts workers’ needs are at their height.”

In late October, Unifor and the Government of Ontario announced the opening of an action centre for GM employees. It will provide assistance and retraining for Unifor members who are affected by the assembly line closure including security officers at Securitas and independent parts supplier (IPS) workers at Lear Corporation Whitby, Robinson Solutions, Marek Hospitality, Syncreon, Auto Warehousing Canada, Inteva Products, Oakley Industries, and CEVA Logistics.

“We are pleased that the location of the action centre will be easily accessible to our affected members at the Local 222 union hall,” said Colin James, Unifor Local 222 President. “Most importantly, this is a peer-led centre ensuring that the support our members receive comes from an authentic place, from people who all know each other’s individual needs and the assistance is that much more likely to be successful.”


Both the Government of Ontario and IPS employers in the region have made financial contributions to help run the centre. This includes $750,000 through Ontario’s Rapid Re-employment and Training Service (RRTS). Local action centres provide co-ordinated community response in labour adjustment situations and provide affected workers with a one-stop centre for support.

“Action Centres like these provide assistance with job retraining, employment, and access to services that our members will need through a very difficult period,” said Greg Auchterlonie, Unifor Local 1090 Financial Secretary. “We are helping reach out to our members and want to make sure that everyone has a familiar place to go and get help from their friends, colleagues, union members who can help navigate the difficult road ahead.

Unifor is Canada’s largest union in the private sector, representing 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy.


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